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Intersect Alert September 10, 2019

By James King posted 09-28-2019 18:46


Public Data

Victory! Ruling in hiQ v. Linkedin protects scraping of public data

"In a long-awaited decision in hiQ Labs, Inc. v. LinkedIn Corp., the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that automated scraping of publicly accessible data likely does not violate the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). This is an important clarification of the CFAA’s scope, which should provide some relief to the wide variety of researchers, journalists, and companies who have had reason to fear cease and desist letters threatening liability simply for accessing publicly available information in a way that publishers object to. It’s a major win for research and innovation, which will hopefully pave the way for courts and Congress to further curb abuse of the CFAA."

"Passed in 1986, the CFAA is the federal anti-hacking law, which imposes both criminal and civil liability on anyone who accesses a computer connected to the Internet “without authorization” or “exceeds authorized access.” Because the statute does not define “without authorization,” interpreting its meaning in the context of modern Internet usages has been notoriously difficult for courts around the country. The hiQ case is just the latest in a series of high-profile Ninth Circuit decisions about the CFAA, in which the appeals court has too often vacillated between limiting the CFAA to its original purpose and adopting more expansive interpretations that risk criminalizing widespread, innocuous online-behavior."

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Data Literacy

We’re in a Data Literacy Crisis. Could Librarians Be the Superheroes We Need?

"Qlik’s recently published global data literacy report found that just 24% of business decision-makers surveyed are fully confident in their ability to read, work with, analyze, and argue with data. Just 32% of the C-suite is viewed as data literate, potentially holding senior leaders back from encouraging their workforces to use data to their advantage."

"Perhaps most surprising, 60% of U.S. workers 16 to 24 years old—people who have been raised surrounded by technology—are overwhelmed by the data they must read and analyze as part of their jobs."

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Truman Library Ground-Breaki
ng Ceremony

"The Harry S. Truman Presidential Library in Independence, MO, is undergoing a year-long renovation that will result in a new Truman permanent exhibition, new amenities for visitors, and enhanced educational and community programming."

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Automatic for the People

"Are self-service libraries a threat to the profession or an opportunity to better serve patrons?"

"When Jacob Grussing, director of Scott County Library (SCL) in Shakopee, Minnesota, spoke to the local paper about SCL’s investigation into self-serve library services, he wasn’t exactly prepared for the patron fallout. Comments poured in supporting SCL’s staffers after the resulting article ran online with the headline 'Libraries without Librarians?'"

"Automated and self-service libraries—which have been popular in Europe for years—are gaining a foothold in the US. Will these services eliminate librarian jobs, or are they a cost-effective way to stretch budgets and provide basic services while freeing staff for other work?"

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How Does Apple (Privately) Find Your Offline Devices?

"At Monday’s WWDC conference, Apple announced a cool new feature called 'Find My'. Unlike Apple’s 'Find my iPhone', which uses cellular communication and the lost device’s own GPS to identify the location of a missing phone, 'Find My' also lets you find devices that don’t have cellular support or internal GPS — things like laptops, or (and Apple has hinted at this only broadly) even  'dumb' location tags that you can attach to your non-electronic physical belongings."

"The good news is that Apple claims that their system actually does provide strong privacy, and that it accomplishes this using clever cryptography. But as is typical, they’ve declined to give out the details how they’re going to do it. Andy Greenberg talked me through an incomplete technical description that Apple provided to Wired, so that provides many hints. Unfortunately, what Apple provided still leaves huge gaps. It’s into those gaps that I’m going to fill in my best guess for what Apple is actually doing."

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Firefox will Encrypt Web Domain Name Requests by Default

"Mozilla's Firefox privacy protections will soon include one of the most basic tasks for any web browser: fielding the domain name requests that help you visit websites. The developer will make DNS over encrypted HTTPS the default for the US starting in late September, locking down more of your web browsing without requiring an explicit toggle like before. Your online habits should be that much more private and secure, with fewer chances for DNS hijacking and activity monitoring."

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The Decline of Online Piracy: How Markets - Not Enforcement - Drive Down Copyright Infringement

"Abstract - This article deals with the acquisition and consumption of music, films, series, books, and games through the various legal and illegal channels that exist nowadays, in a set of thirteen countries across the globe. The article has four aims. First, it provides an overview of the rules on liability for and enforcement of online copyright infringement in the countries studied. Second, it gives factual information about the state of authorized and unauthorized acquisition and consumption of these types of content. The third aim is to evaluate the underlying mechanisms and the link with enforcement measures and legal supply. Lastly, the article assesses the effect of online piracy on consumption from legal sources. To further these aims, the article combines different sources and empirical methods, including consumer surveys among nearly 35.000 respondents and comparative legal research. Our main conclusion is that online piracy is declining. The key driver for this decline is the increasing availability of affordable legal content, rather than enforcement measures. Where the legal supply of copyright-protected content is affordable, convenient and diverse, consumers are willing to pay for it and abandon piracy. Policymakers should therefore shift their focus from repressive approaches to tackle online infringement towards policies and measures that foster lawful remunerated access to copyright-protected content. "

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A Comparative Study of Perceptions and Use of Google Scholar and Academic Library Discovery Systems

"Google Scholar and academic library discovery systems are both popular resources among academic users for finding scholarly information. By conducting an online survey with 975 users from more than 20 public research universities across the United States, this study comparatively investigates how and why academic users use these two resources. Results show that the ways participants used both resources were similar, and both were perceived as highly accessible and useful. Academic library discovery systems’ perceived comprehensiveness, subjective norm, loyalty, and intended use were higher than Google Scholar, while Google Scholar’s perceived ease of use, system quality, and satisfaction were higher than that of academic library discovery systems."

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